Disciple or Deserter?

Posted: July 26, 2016 in TLCC
Tags: , , ,

In following Jesus, some would come to a point of being a disciple while others would come to a point of being a deserter.

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Following Jesus is hard. Even his own disciples left him when He emphasized that Lordship means giving up everything for Him. John wrote down and said…

many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him. (John 6:66)

Jesus was being mobbed by a crowd and he responded by telling them that they were after the wrong things. They were after free bread, because Jesus did the miracle of feeding the five thousand. They were after healing, because people knew Jesus could heal the sick.

In the same way, Christians today come to Jesus for the wrong reasons. We ought to focus on the Lordship of Christ. We ought to come to a point of understanding what it means to submit to His Lordship.

Not everyone who follows Jesus is a disciple. In fact, in the case of the disciples, some would be deserters. So we are going to look at the lives of some of the disciples. One of them betrayed Jesus. That is why Jesus said…

There are some of you who do not believe. (John 6:64)

The good news is, it is God who draws man to Himself. It is not our effort. That is why Jesus said…

No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. (John 6:44)

While it is true that following Jesus is hard, it is God who would work in us to fully follow Him. Not one inch is to our credit. Unless God moves in our lives, we won’t follow Him. So how do we come to a point of following Him? Jesus said…

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. (John 6:63)

Following Him begins when we read His words. For in it is spirit and life. God makes us conscious of our sin. God reveals himself through His words.

Case #1 Judas Iscariot

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Judas was part of the twelve. Jesus knew that Judas was going to betray Him. He said…

Did I not choose you, the Twelve? And yet one of you is a devil. (John 6:70)

Judas had the best pastor, the best leader, the best teacher, the wisest best friend, yet he failed.

Why?

The problem isn’t the leadership or the church. The problem of Judas is his attitude.

In the same way with us today…

We can have the best worship team, the best pastor, the best location, but until we have a relationship with Jesus Christ, Christianity is but an idea.

Case #2 James & John

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And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. Immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him. (Matt. 4:21,22)

When Jesus called James and John, they followed IMMEDIATELY. That is a good key word. They didn’t hesitate. They dropped their nets and followed. What is interesting is that the father was also mentioned.

They left the boat AND THEIR FATHER.

Why is this important? This is because Jesus comes first before family or business. Jesus is more important that earning money. Jesus is more important than our family. There will be times when we are going to choose between Jesus and our family. This is so real today. We are in a ‘Christian’ country but those who want to know Christ are being persecuted. The question is, are we part of the persecution or are we part of the solution in helping the youth to make a choice?

Following Jesus meant Jesus comes first before myself (or ourselves).

Case #3 Peter

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Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.” (John 21:18,19)

We think we have a choice but really, Jesus is to be the only priority we have. We don’t have the option of choosing our assignment. We have to be like Peter. We go where God tells us. We don’t have the option to make decisions for ourselves. We have to go where God leads. Including the call to disciple. We don’t have the option of choosing Jesus as Savior and not as Lord. If He is Lord, then we must do what He commands.

Following Jesus meant Jesus comes first before my reputation and pleasure. 

Case #4 Paul 

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but as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; (2 Cor. 6:4-5)

Paul could have chosen a life of comfort. Instead, he chose to preach the gospel, using his own resources. Using his skills. Check this…

Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. (2 Cor. 11:24-27)

even if it is inconvenient. even if it is uncomfortable. Jesus should be first.

What hardship do we have when it comes to Jesus? When it comes to Paul, it cost him a lot to a point it cost him his neck.

Following Jesus meant Jesus comes first before my reputation and pleasure. There would be times when it is very inconvenient for us to follow, but we must.

As we follow Jesus, we want  you to be a disciple, not a deserter. That is why we come up with small groups, with discipleship meet ups, and that is why we work so we can proclaim the gospel for free.

Can you do me a favor? If these ideas resonate with you, would you:

• REACT. Do something.
• RESPOND. Leave a comment on this post.
• REPOST. Repost this link on Twitter, Facebook or your blog.

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